Heraklion, the fifth largest city in Greece, is the capital of Crete. It is one of the most fascinating and vibrant cities of the Mediterranean Basin. The city is the birthplace of world-famous artists like El Greco and Nikos Kazantzakis. Due to its long history, the architecture of Heraklion has mixtures of many cultures. Not far from the heart of the city lies the Minoan Palace of Knossos, one of the most important archaeological discoveries in the world. Fine examples of Venetian architecture are the Venetian Fortress at the entrance of the port and the Venetian Loggia, where the Town Hall is housed today. Visitors have the chance to admire many Byzantine churches and monasteries, many fountains from the Venetian times, the Church of Saint Markus and numerous neoclassical buildings.